Ezekiel Elliott tested positive for coronavirus.
According to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport and Tom Pelissero, multiple players from the Cowboys and the Texans have tested positive for COVID-19. This is not good to hear, but fortunately these are professional athletes that should be in tip-top shape and will hopefully not have much trouble pushing through the virus. As with everyone that has the coronavirus, hopefully the players that caught it are feeling better soon.
Christian Hackenberg is attempting to become a baseball pitcher, according to NBC Sports’ John Clark.
The former Penn State quarterback, who was thought of as a future No. 1 overall selection before eventually going to the Jets in the second round in 2016, is still just 25 years old and says he still feels like he “has a lot left in the tank.” There’s no question Hackenberg has a strong arm, and it’ll be an intriguing story to follow moving forward if an MLB organization gives him an opportunity. Hackenberg did not appear in any games during his NFL career. We wish him luck moving forward.
Antonio Brown pleads no contest to January 2020 charges.
Brown will have probation and community service, but his attorney Carson Hancock says that the All-Pro receiver “was not convicted of any criminal misconduct.” Hancock went on to explain in a statement that the situation was basically that—after a disagreement with a moving truck driver over pay—Brown’s friends took boxes off of the truck and immediately put back the ones that were not his after the driver told them other people’s boxes were also in his possession. AB’s multiple off-field issues are still being looked at by the NFL, and he’ll need to get cleared by the league before he can get back on the field. Teams will probably wait for the NFL’s decision before they even consider signing Brown.
Sony Michel underwent foot surgery, according to ESPN’s Mike Reiss.
Reiss says Michel had the surgery last month, adding that the procedure “was viewed as more maintenance-based to help relieve discomfort that Michel had been experiencing.” However, the foot surgery puts the start of training camp, which is expected to begin in late July, in jeopardy for the third-year running back. Michel has missed just three games in two NFL seasons, but he’s been banged up since the Patriots selected him in the first round of the 2018 draft. Hopefully the Georgia product gets to 100% soon and can continue being the lead ball-carrier for a New England offense moving forward without Tom Brady under center.
Rashaad Penny (knee) is still expected to start the season on the PUP list.
Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll spoke to reporters today, and he confirmed that the team will not rush Penny back from his ACL injury late last season. The signing of veteran running back Carlos Hyde further confirms that Seattle does not expect Penny to be ready for Week 1. Things can change, but expect Penny to be out for at least the first six weeks of 2020 as he begins the year on the PUP list.
Dirk Koetter expects to see a “jump” in Calvin Ridley’s game this season.
The Falcons offensive coordinator spoke yesterday, and he said of the third-year receiver: “Calvin has just exceptional speed and quickness. His quick-twitch body movements are exceptional. I think Calvin will do nothing but get better the more he works with Matt [Ryan], the more he gains Matt’s trust. I think there’s some little things that Cal can work on that will really help him elevate.” Koetter added that the former first-round pick has the pure speed and athletic ability to just beat his man in coverage, but that “as he gets a little more consistent in his route running and understanding what his landmarks are, his depths of routes are, I think you’re going to see a jump in his game.” Ridley had 866 yards in 13 games last season, and he’s had 800+ yards in each of his first two years in the NFL on target totals of 92 and 93. Assuming he stays healthy, the Alabama product should be an absolute lock for 1,000+ yards in 2020.
Todd Gurley officially passed his physical.
This was basically just a formality, but it’s still good to hear that Atlanta passed Gurley on his physical after agreeing to sign him a couple of months ago. The University of Georgia product is certainly motivated to prove that he still has it at just 26 years old (this August), and he’s in a great spot with the Falcons this season.
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